Interviews: How to explain the nature of your job loss

The way you handle explaining the reason you left past employment while interviewing can hold a great deal of weight. In my recruiting practice, I often help candidates prepare for interviews. Recently, I had a conversation with a good friend who unfortunately just lost her beloved job due to Covid-19; she worked in the entertainment sector. This industry took a big & early hit in the initial wave of downsizings in Canada due to the pandemic. We were discussing some resume updates and I caught that she referred to herself as being “Terminated”. This caught my attention. She was actually restructured. This got me thinking… I talk to job seekers all the time and it seemed that there is some broad based confusion about the wording associated with job loss. I decided to talk to a few HR professionals to get some advice. It all comes down to cause or fault. Is your reason for leaving a job due to your poor performance and/or negligence or was the reason due to a shortage of work or changes to the business outside of your specific performance. This is an important distinction in an interview. This guide is intended to provide clarity between the definitions and is not intended as legal definitions. This is a tool for your interview prep to put your best foot forward.

Posted in Uncategorized

Hiring during Coronavirus Pandemic ~ A guide to Virtual Onboarding

I am witnessing many of my clients, who have hired employees prior to the outbreak, continue as planned with their onboarding.  Some have pushed start dates, a few have put hiring projects on hold. Many have been working on very creative ways for these new employees, whose start dates fell after the pandemic was announced, to start their jobs in remote capacity.  This takes planning and organization. Creating an effective virtual hiring process now will keep your new employees engaged and informed and ultimately retained if you set it up correctly.

A few things to keep in mind as you consider what will work best for your business:

  1. Share documentation in advance
  2. Schedule Communication
  3. Leverage Technology
  4. Mimic your companies work culture & style in this virtual setting
  5. Set up Remote Work, Flex Schedules & Working from Home Policies in advance

Share Documentation:  Be sure to send out all documents and resources required in advance, include payroll & benefits forms.   Provide new employees with the company’s employee contact lists so they have an easy way of getting a hold of colleagues and collaborators. Order and ship all required hardware (laptop, phone etc.) prepare all sign-ins for required software applications, drives, group chats – set up user names, accounts, emails and passwords and add in to what is shipped or couriered to new employees prior to start. A smart move is to get them set up with VPN & remote access a few days prior to start to allow them to familiarize with system and avoid their first day being spent getting set up – result is a smoother day 1.

Schedule Communication: Prior to start date, set up a call or video chat to ensure they have what they need. Set up expectations for your new hires to create accountability. Conduct all training via video conferencing as a group. Consider hosting a virtual welcome party with existing team members to welcome and integrate new employees to the team – add lunch; (Many options exist to send a meal on their first day of work – a nice touch).  Set new hires up with a mentor, not their boss, to help them feel connected to the group. Perhaps the Friday prior to start date,  you can provide your new hire with a full schedule for day 1 with a 2 week plan of meetings which you set up virtually for them including virtual tours, team meetings etc.  That first day will make your new hire feel so welcomed and so connected!

Leverage Technology:  So many choices- by now your company will have picked their preferred method of video conferencing and sharing documentation online. Zoom, Skype, Microsoft Teams, Google Meet (formerly Google Hangouts),  GoToMeeting, SharePoint, Google Docs and on and on. Use them and get the new hires set up right away. Create group chats by function/project/task or teams. WhatsApp is a great option, I’m new to it but getting more acquainted to its usefulness daily.

Bring your work culture, dynamics into this virtual setting:  It is very true that every company has a personality. I am fortunate to work with very diverse industries all of which have something unique and special that defines their companies’ culture. I have seen some incredible cultures emerge; employee-centric, collaborative, progressive, connected– not hard to sell these companies to prospective employees.  Whatever makes you unique, be sure to pull that in, make it feel personal, your remote employees would prefer to be working alongside of you and may be concerned about feeling out of the loop or unconnected.  Get creative and have fun, they will thank you for it!

Set up policies to support Remote productivity: Let’s face it, work from home and virtual onboarding are a solution to a very complex problem we are all in the process of championing. It will likely change how we work for good and maybe that will be a good thing.  We shall see. In the meantime, well written policies will take out the grey and make it very black and white on how work is to be conducted and what the rules of engagement are.  Set up your best practices in advance, ask for feedback from the team when creating these policies, delegate to internal team members or find a qualified HR consultant who can help you draft them.

It has been recently announced by some of the big automotive players that a North American return to work is scheduled for May 4th.  This feels like a good sign although we will be cautious no doubt. There is hiring happening, in some cases high volume for many of the essential services which keep our economy afloat right now.

Recruiting Concepts Inc. would be very happy to help find your special talent and help get them onboarded with care.  Please reach out for an introductory conversation to learn more about how we can support your business.  Until then, we wish you well.




Posted in Business content

Help for Canadian Business Owners – Subsidies & Relief and how to apply

Recruiting Concepts wants to help our customers navigate the current COVID-19 situation. We have been carefully reviewing all options available to Business Owners. Government funded programs have been set up to help businesses through these tough times. Here are some of the funding programs that will address some immediate issues:  Hoping you find this resource beneficial.  If you require any support navigating any staffing related challenges please reach out, we are here to help. 

Recruiting Concepts Wage Subsidy Doc WIth Links (2)

Posted in Business content

Recruiter Confessional: Why Business owners should share with their Recruiter the same as they do with their Doctor

I am reading a very interesting book right now called “Who” by Geoff Smart & Randy Street. Wonderful read, relevant and current information about using scorecarding and sourcing. I’m only 50 pages in and I hit a sentence that inspired me to write an article. It just hit me. In a chapter discussing using external Recruiters to source talent, they offer this: “Think of recruiters much the way you would think of a doctor or a financial advisor. The more you keep them in the dark about who you are, what’s wrong, and what you really need, the less effective they will be.” Simple and obvious right?

This inspired me because I’m actually at this stage with my clients right now. One of my favourite parts of the job of Recruiter is getting to know the company whose hiring project(s) I have taken on.  I’m talking about really getting to know them, at a personal level; this is a special privilege that I hold very sacred. Part of these initial critical conversations often involve having honest, no holds barred discussions with Business Owners & Leaders whom I invite to share with me what may be broken in the organization and in need of some improvement. During the Recruitment Planning phase, we talk about hiring habits and practices prior to my involvement, their best hires and the misfires. I ask about their interests, their goals for the business, what they worry about among many, many other things. These are candid free flowing confidential chats. I asked pointed questions for a purpose. My projects are diverse, across many industries due to my decision not to specialize. In each case, I pick my clients because they will teach me something new. Like taking a course, each hiring project exposes me to new markets, technologies, management styles, business philosophies, systems and processes and I broaden my knowledge base each and every time. My clients are often my teachers; another privilege of running my own Recruiting Consulting business. The advice and guidance I get for my own business from my clients whom I develop true personal relationships with is an unexpected privilege.

When my clients are truthful with me about the inner workings of their business, good, bad and ugly, this provides a true “lay of the land” which is used to spot their talent and effectively market and pitch the opportunity to prospective A players on their behalf. Knowing how my clients think, how they rationalize, how they manage and lead is the stuff that motivates me to be the best Recruiter they have ever had and their first call when they need to hire again.

This career has allowed me to develop and fine tune my listening skills and my ability to be intuitive when it comes to the matchmaking element. I love being a matchmaker, a connector of people. It is who I am and gets me up out of bed every day with challenges to tackle. Let me tell you, people are super complex and figuring my way around the truths and lies when sourcing and interviewing is the downside, negative as that may sound. Being a Recruiter is a very interesting professional that truly offers continuous learning and development. A job well done is the goal, measured by great connections made, careers built, businesses made better as a result of great people connected at the right time.

Posted in Social Recruiting

Podcast Recruiting Concepts Oct 3, 2017

115 – Recruiting Concepts – with Krista

Posted in Uncategorized